Tuesday, July 2, 2013

BOOK REVIEW: Deadline by Mira Grant

Deadline is the second book in the Newsflesh Trilogy written by Mira Grant. It was released on 2 June 2011 and published by Orbit. The ISBN is 1841498998.

SPOILERS: DO NOT READ THIS REVIEW IF YOU HAVE NOT READ FEED BOOK ONE IN THE NEWSFLESH TRILOGY, THIS REVIEW WILL SPOIL THE ENDING OF THE FIRST BOOK AS IT FEATURES A PRETTY BIG TWIST. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED BY THESE CAPS BEWARE.

PLOT

Shaun Mason is a man without a mission. Not even running the news organisation he built with his sister has the same urgency as it used to. Playing with dead things just doesn't seem as fun when you've lost as much as he has.

But when a researcher from the Centre for Disease Control fakes her own death and appears on his doorstep with a ravenous pack of zombies in tow, Shaun's relieved to find a new purpose in life. Because this researcher comes bearing news: the monster who attacked them may be destroyed, but the conspiracy is far from dead.

Now, Shaun hits the road to find what truth can be found at the end of a shotgun.

WHY I BOUGHT IT

The first book in the series FEED was an excellent and thrilling book with a rich world so there was never a doubt that I would want to follow up and see where things go from here with all the people from After The End Times.

WHAT I THOUGHT

Oh my goodness, how can something so good fall so far. After reading FEED it was all I could do not to go directly to the second in the series Deadline I really wanted to see where it would go after an ending like that unfortunately where it went was straight down the toilet. Out of context that might seem harsh but I feel that it is fully justified. Feed was a tense political thriller with a bit of undead thrown in there to keep things interested while Deadline is a much slower paced story which is fine the trouble is with the change that comes over the main characters.

SPOILERS

Georgia died at the end of FEED and that sparked a change in Shaun. During FEED Shaun was a loveable jerk and of the siblings the more personable of the two by far and at worst could be thought of as a loveable jerk. In Deadline that person is as dead as Georgia and in his place is a mentally unbalanced asshole who is prone to violent outbursts and constantly in danger of turning on his friends and colleagues.

Shaun spends his time moaning about his situation and acting as if he was the only person who lost Georgia when all the people at the blog did as well as several other people. They all went through hell together but he insists on being alone in his suffering, sometimes when I was reading I got the feeling that as far as Shaun is concerned the only two humans on earth that matter where him and George and everyone else was just window dressing. I know it is somewhat explained by their strange childhoods but hey lots of people have lousy childhoods.

We learn that Shaun has assaulted the workers under him on at least two occasions and been violent in front of them many more times than that. That combined with his rather questionable sanity and the fact that he really has passed all of his responsibilities to the rest of the After The End Times staff leaves me with little to no respect for Shaun which bugs me throughout the book.

The other thing that bothers me about this book is the Filler. Now when I think of filler I usually mean that those arcs in anime versions of manga when they run out source material. In Deadline the filler is an almost constant recap of the events from FEED because you know why would we the readers know what happened in the previous book. Of course a little recap is fine but I don’t think I am overestimating to say that a fifth of this book is directly related to the events of the previous book, a cruel editor could have a field day reducing the page count on this book.

You could call it a bad case of the “Previously On” syndrome which ruins so many TV shows these days. Writing this it feels like I am making a lot of something that must be a minor detail but trust me when I tell you that it is a big deal.

The plot moves on nicely though despite these failings the problem is the quality of the writing in my opinion but I have already invested in the story after reading FEED. We slowly learn more about the conspiracy although by the end of the story it has only really revealed only a little bit more about the huge conspiracy behind the attempted assassination of the Presidential candidate.


To summarise my feelings on this mixed bag of a sequel if you have not read Feed yet DON’T if you have and are already sucked into what you think is one of the best series you have followed in a while continue to read on but prepared for disappointment.

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